Background: Mild cognitive impairment often precedes dementia. The purpose of this analysis was to estimate the population attributable fraction for physical activity in Colombia, which is the reduction in cases that would occur if all participants were physically active. Methods: The sample included 20,174 men and women aged 70.04 ± 7.68 years (mean ± SD) from the National Survey of Health, Wellbeing and Ageing. Trained interviewers administered a shorter version of the mini-mental state examination and mild cognitive impairment was defined as a score of 12 or less out of 19. Logistic regression models were fitted and population attributable fractions for physical activity were calculated. All analyses were adjusted for age, sex, height, education, income, civil status, smoking, and alcohol drinking. Results: The prevalence of physical activity was approximately 50% when defined as walking between 9 and 20 blocks at least three times per week. Theoretically, 19% of cases of mild cognitive impairment would be eliminated if all adults were to walk (95% confidence interval: 16%, 22%). The prevalence was approximately 20% when defined as taking part in vigorous sport or exercise at least three times per week. Theoretically, 23% of cases of mild cognitive impairment would be eliminated if all adults were to take part in vigorous sport or exercise (16%, 30%). Similar results were observed after removing those who reported mental health problems. Conclusion: Physical activity, whether walking or vigorous sport and exercise, has the potential to substantially reduce the burden of mild cognitive impairment in Colombia.
- Physical activity
- Primary prevention